Bristol City big man Aden Flint craving Carroll clash

Saturday 24 Jan 2015
Aden Flint, left, is relishing the chance to face Andy Carroll
As Andy Carroll was becoming the most expensive English footballer, Aden Flint was tarmacking roads when he wasn’t turning out for Alfreton Town.

England striker Carroll’s move from Newcastle to Liverpool for £35m four years ago shot him into the nation’s headlines – whereas Flint’s performances in front of a few hundred people in the Conference North were about to earn him a move to League Two with Swindon Town.

Carroll has since joined West Ham, and Flint signed for Bristol City last season, yet despite their different career paths, the magic of The FA Cup brings these two giants together on Sunday at Ashton Gate - and Flint cannot wait.

Bristol City v West Ham United

The FA Cup
Fourth Round
2pm, Sunday 25 January
Ashton Gate

“This is why the FA Cup is the best competition in this country, if not the world,” explained Flint. “Andy Carroll and I come from very different backgrounds, but there is always a chance you can land a Premier League team if you get through the first and second rounds. That is the beauty of the Cup - it's a great leveller.

“We both like to head the ball for a living and it should be a really good battle. I’m looking forward to it if he plays. You always want to test yourself against the best players and it’s a challenge I’m relishing.

“You don’t play for a club like Newcastle and then get a big move to Liverpool for no reason. He is a top Premier League player and it is no coincidence that, when he returned from injury last season, West Ham turned the corner.

“He’s back scoring goals, West Ham are doing well at the top end of the Premier League and it will be a big test for us.”

Big tests are for big men – and the Bristol City centre-half certainly fits that category, standing at 6ft 5ins, a full inch taller than the Hammers forward he will come face-to-face with on Sunday.

Speaking to the media ahead of the Cup clash, Flint said his past experiences in the competition have enabled him to have a “no fear” attitude as he and his team-mates look to upset the Premier League high-flyers.

Flint celebrating a goal for City (photos by Joe Meredith/

Flint celebrating a goal for City (photos by Joe Meredith/

Flint already has had a taste of a giantkilling, playing for Swindon when they defeated then top-flight Wigan Athletic 2-1 in 2012, and he believes lightning can strike twice.

“We were a League Two side then, but we still managed to cause an upset,” recalled Flint. “We also knocked Stoke City out of the Capital One Cup a few years ago, so I know how these things can happen.

“Who knows what can happen,” added the former England C international. “If we are all playing at the top of our game and performing as a unit, I’m sure we can give a good account of ourselves.

“We’ll pay West Ham the respect they deserve as a Premier League team, but we definitely won’t fear them.

“West Ham didn’t beat Everton to be knocked out by Bristol City and I think their attitude will be spot on. But out attitude has to be right as well and that means not being afraid.”

By Gary Stonehouse Staff Writer